Water is the most important resource on the planet. Humans use it for cooking, cleaning, drinking, and more. Considering its importance to human life, it’s unfortunate how little of the Earth’s water is available for consumption. For every 26 gallons of water on the planet, half a teaspoon of it is usable. Water is precious, and it is impacted by all areas of life, from climate change to health to technology.
Due to temperature changes, water loss is expected to rise from 12% in 2005 to 41% in 2060. Higher temperature causes bacteria in water to grow faster, and higher sea levels are compromising freshwater reserves with salt deposits. Soon, 1 in 4 children will live in water stressed areas, causing massive humanitarian stress.
Not only is the quality of water disappearing, but its quality is dropping as well. More than 21 million Americans drink water that violates US health standards. Water borne diseases cause 7.15 million illnesses and 6,630 deaths each year. Nearly $260 billion is lost every year due to lack of water sanitation.
Water filters need to step up. Be it travel size or economical, new filters are found to remove over 200 unsafe contaminants. The large filters can serve up to 150 people. For every $1 invested in clean water, society can receive a $4 return on investment thanks to lower healthcare costs, higher daily productivity, and fewer premature deaths.
For all the help technology provides to water conservation, technology also costs us water. Our world consumes 6 times the amount of water it did 100 years ago, mainly due to the water it takes to create and maintain new technologies. We need over 39,000 gallons of water to produce a car, and tech giant Google needs 15.79 billion liters to operate.